Boston Medical Center Offers New Procedure For Kidney Donors

in Health & Medicine, News Releases
January 17th, 2001

Contact: Gina M. Digravio, 617-638-8491 | gina.digravio@bmc.org

(Boston, Mass.) — In an attempt to alleviate the critical shortage of live kidney donors, urologists at Boston Medical Center now offer a new procedure which makes kidney donation less painful, has a quicker recovery time and has less chance for complications. Referred to as laparoscopic nephretomy, the procedure involves using minimal access surgery techniques that require only three small incisions to remove the kidney. A standard operation for kidney removal normally produces an incision 8-15 inches long.

Because of the severe shortage of cadaver kidneys, those in need of a kidney transplant are more often faced with asking a living relative for a kidney. This becomes very difficult for some people because they don’t want to put a loved one through the surgery which normally involves a lengthy hospital stay, convalescence, a painful recovery and the potential for complications.

“Using the laparoscopic nephretomy procedure however, reduces length of stay in a hospital by three to five days compared to the standard operation. In addition, laparoscopic nephretomy patients suffer less blood loss, require a fraction of pain medication and have less chance for complications. They can also resume normal activity in days compared to weeks and even return to work sooner,” said Gennaro Carpinito, MD, FACS, a urological surgeon at Boston Medical Center.

“Using the minimal access alternative compared to the standard opening of the body is a win-win situation from both a quality of life and financial perspective for both the patient and the hospital,” added Carpinito.

In addition to using the procedure for kidney donations, this same procedure is used for patients with cancerous and non-functioning kidneys.

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